Letter from the Trustees

Jenny writes to reflect on the work of Star Action over the last 13 years, and gives some updates on current projects

One of the most heart-warming things about our work with Star Action over the past thirteen years since we started our little charity has been the appreciation we have received from people we have been able to help – thanks to your support. As you may know, we began our work in Sri Lanka just after the terrible tsunami wave devastated parts of the south and east coast of this beautiful little island, which was also still suffering from years of civil war.  Now, thankfully, the war is over but there remain many repercussions from this time, many bereaved families and traumatised people.  The Tamil people in the war-torn area are still suffering inequality of opportunity, and lack of education, even in the basics of the language of the whole country (Sinhala), and this is one reason why we have been focusing recently on our education projects, as well as helping particularly sad and broken families and individuals in need of urgent medical help.

Locals arrive at Lal’s to ask for help

When Stuart and I were in Sri Lanka in February, we were particularly touched by the people who came to see us this time, not to ask for more help (although there were plenty of those too!) but simply to say ‘thank you’ and share what a difference Star Action’s help had made to their lives.  You see, with a little charity like ours, there is a personal link with individuals – some of these dear people feel almost like our own family, as we have met them now on a number of visits. They also appreciate the continuity of seeing the same faces.

This is also true of our children’s home in India, now called ‘Brighter Life’, but originally founded as ‘Save the Babies’ right back in 1996 by our Trustee  Kate.  Right from the beginning she did not want the home to be too big, so there would always be a family feeling.  She has achieved her goal, with the help of our wonderful houseparents, Sasees and Richard.

New arrivals at Brighter Life

We are so happy that at last her family commitments at home (with help from me and Stuart in caring for her five-year old twins)  are allowing her to return to her Indian family.  She will be writing all about her visit in the next newsletter.

Star Action has also been able to give help in Nepal.  This is a country which we know has a special place in many of your hearts as it does in mine, since my trekking days there and, latterly, my visits following the devastating earthquake.  Keshav, our good friend now, also brings the ‘family feeling’ to all his work, both for Star Action, and as Deputy Headmaster of a large school in Kathmandu.  The same is true of Hamida and Fred, whose latest report on our Community Centre school in Ghana is included in our Africa section.

So, dear friends, we thank you very much for all your generous support which enables us to continue this truly worthwhile work.  We know it is just a ‘little drop in the ocean of need’, but the smiles on the faces of the people and children whose lives have been touched tell their own story.

With love from,

On behalf of all our Trustees, 

Joan, Kate and Stuart 

PS  I first drafted this letter just before the tragic bombings in Sri Lanka. We are glad to report that no one involved with our Star Action work was killed or injured, but our latest reports from Rohan are that the whole country is still deeply traumatised and the income of many is affected by lack of tourist visitors, so our prayers and continuing support of all our projects are very much appreciated.

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